4 year anniversary

Today is the four-year anniversary of my accident. This one hurts more than any other anniversary I’ve gone through so far. Four years just seems like such a long time. It seems kind of like a breaking point for me. Next month I’ll be turning 25. When I was injured I was 20 years old, almost 21. I can’t believe how fast time has flown by.

There is no doubt that I am making significant progress and my upcoming achievements concerning my physical recovery, seem inevitable. Yet, at the current time I’m feeling depressed and lonely. Throughout my life I’ve never quite felt like I belonged anywhere. I would reach a new place in life, and find it exciting and interesting for a while, but then suddenly just feel completely out of place and move on. I’ve yet to feel truly comfortable in Atlanta and over the past year the process of being here actually has not been all that easy for me.

I began to vent today about the peace, joy and bliss I am trying to attain and wonder if I am making any sort of progress. I constantly feel like I am processing, running into fears, and sometimes wish I could just have a little breathing room, a little comfort, a little support. It would be nice if I could completely accept where I am in life right now, on all levels, and just be content and happy. I’m constantly too hard on myself, focusing on my flaws, and all the things I don’t have but wish I could. I’m always practicing the art of loving kindness and forgiveness for myself and all others, yet the practice seems to always remind me how far away I am from the goal. Instead of always trying to achieve perfection, maybe I should just accept my flaws, observe them, and live with them, instead of always trying to reach perfection. Many times I do accept my emotions, my flaws, and simply meditate on who I am at the moment, as a human. But this does not take away from the uncomfortable feeling of being alone and lost.

On the outside I seem to be a very happy person. I get along well with others and I am apparently enjoying my life, but many times on the inside I am afraid and hurting. But I do not wish to portray these feelings. I want to be a person who uplifts the energy of the room and spreads a feeling of joy. I know that I’m not being fake when I’m out and about, but many times when I come back home and I’m alone is when the fear strikes me.

I’m venting a great deal here. It has been awhile since I’ve opened up my heart on this blog and discussed my insecurities. To be honest, the thought of recovery even scares me. I don’t even know if major recovery is going to bring me the peace I seek. Recovery is going to bring me a whole new set of fears to face. I sound like a mental case here. I could rack my brain and find all the reasons why I should feel love, joy and peace but right now I just don’t feel like it. I feel like being sad. I feel like thinking about the things I want but don’t have. I feel like thinking about loneliness. I feel like thinking about the fact that I do not have a clue as to what I should do, how I should feel, or what this all means. Because frankly, this is life. This is my life, and my life is going to have constant phases.

Sometimes I get the feeling that I must be happy in order to recover. I hope that is not the case. I know that there will be times of ecstatic joy and happiness in my life. As of right now I’ll be at peace knowing there is great reason and purpose in my life, but being at peace does not necessarily mean being extremely happy. There can be joy, which I believe I do express on a daily basis, not because I being fake, not because I’m trying too hard, but because I have an inner peace of faith, no matter what human emotion is occurring inside of me. I can be sad on the inside, and still spread the light of God, because even sadness is a divine expression. We are not meant to always be happy, running around like little Barbie doll’s, perfect and content. We are meant to be sad, we are meant to grow angry, we are meant to feel alone. Sounds like a harsh truth or maybe a false one. I don’t know right now and I’m okay with that.

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8 Responses to 4 year anniversary

  1. Beth says:

    You have put your heart and soul in this post.  I don\’t know you except from reading your posts.  I am hoping that you have a loving supporting family.  I feel sure that you must.
    God made us and we are human.  He didn\’t expect us to be perfect, so don\’t feel that you have to be perfect.
    You will continue to be in my prayers.

  2. Robine says:

    What you write is so true, I often feel like this also – in my life. People see me as wise because I say wise things, and at the same time I struggle with implementing them in my own life – I am too hard on myself while I tell others not to be on themselves… and I feel joy daily, but also loneliness and sadness… I recognize for myself a part that says to me: when I have this (future) I will be… and at the same time have the feeling that when I am not happy NOW, I cannot reach that future – I feel like torn between a lot of things at the same time – and that again makes me feel sad and lost.Take care!! 😀 Love and Light, SabineWisdom is what comes from making a shitload of mistakes, and learning from them 😉

  3. Amy Horne says:

    Wow Colin, 4 years. I can\’t believe that. I can\’t believe it\’s been 7 years since high school either…
    I think it\’s great that you are expressing yourself on here and letting those feelings out – because you know what… there are lots of people out there with the same kind of feelings. When I was pregnant with Wes nobody told me about the whole \’post partum\’ phase and what feelings I may feel. It was rough. I think any major life changes (having a baby, an accident like yours) can really take a toll on our emotions and feelings. Even though my change was expected, I still had no idea what it was like to care for a newborn baby… and it\’s not easy 🙂
    So, I\’m with you dude, I had a rough bout with lonely feelings. Things are much better for me now but every once and a while those feelings do show up again. I think it\’s a lifelong battle that we\’ve got to get used to fighting. And thank God for friends to talk to about it!

  4. Patricia says:

    Hey Colin! Glad you are writing about your feelings. It helps. The more people that I meet, the more I realize that people feel like they don\’t "fit" or "belonged anywhere" and that we all suffer from various forms of fear. I remember thinking that this was a lonely journey but as I talked about some of my own fears people talked to me about having very similiar ones – and many of the people have been people that I never expected to hear that from. Maybe we beat ourselves up too much – I have started listening to the way I talk to myself and also the way others talk about themselves – we are all really tough on ourselves. In other observations I realize that the worlds, so to speak, that people mention that they don\’t feel like they belong don\’t really exist or possibly there is a group of caddie people hanging out together making others feel like they don\’t belong – well – I definately don\’t wanta belong to that kind of group that makes other people feel crappy and you know maybe life is about growing and changing and those changes are constant which is actually a blessing and with those changes come different ideas about different ways to live. Maybe it is difficult but slowing it down can actually make it more pleasant. Recently I cut my schedule in half, I felt scared at first like if I didn\’t accomplish the stuff fast enough that I would miss something or I would feel like I was failing in my recovery. Actually, not only has cutting my schedule in half given me greater confidence (totally unexpected) but it has also made me feel good – a new kind of good that feels a bit more authentic than my normal happy (if that makes any sense) – I\’m enjoying the process of doing the things, enjoying the journey more, even really tasks that I used to dislike have become sort of meditiatively relaxing. I realized that in my case, my fears, my inability to love myself, and my frustrations were often coming from getting in my own way. So my new phrase is to keep it simple. I didn\’t always like that statement, but actually keeping it simple gives me more time and motivation to blaze new trails.
    Oh and as far as your entry prior to this one – definately stay you! You are a blessing and it has been an honor to get to read your blog and know you a little. I believe in you and your great gifts. Dream big and keep it simple! patti  

  5. Neora Chana says:

    Hi, Colin,
    As usual, your post touched a lot of things inside me.  When I was in my mid-20\’s, I broke one of my arms very badly and was facing possible severe limitations on it.  I was lucky, I ended up with more use than expected, but I think it gave me a small taste of what you are going through.
    So I do empathize with wanting to get on with it, to have your cure and being impatient for it.  It\’s only natural to want to be the person you were for 21 years; to get that life back, with the added wisdom of your expereince.
    In Judaism, we pray for healing, not a cure. It\’s a subtle distinction, but also gives G-d a myriad of possibilities.  I\’m not saying you should change the focus of your prayers, how full of hubris would I have to be to do that!  But sometimes reflecing on a different word can open our eyes to other ways G-d may be moving in our life. 
    In regards to how you are feeling; you know, you set the bar pretty high for yourself.  Not sharing your \’bad feelings\’?  I can only imagine how much that alienates you from others because, in my case, I end up watching myself from another position and become even more aware of the dissonance between how I feel and what I\’m saying.  In fact, we add quite a bit to the stress of our lifes when we do this.  Not that you should go to the other extreme, but finding a happy medium or that one person you can talk to face to face about this may be really helpful  And how can you be happy if you are always focussed on your flaws? 
    As far as happy, before this last, more effective round of anti-depressants, I described happiness as a butterfly: ethereal, here for  a second and then off, delicate and uncontrollable.  I think of happiness differently now; on an average day, I feel more happiness than I used to in a month.  However, I think there\’s another part to it; my anxieties have been greatly reduced as well.  I think we need a calm foundation on which we can reach for happiness.  And that happiness is more like the faithful dog that is always by your side rather than the short-lived butterfly.
    Take care.

  6. Ara says:

    Remember that the mind is capable of both freeing and enslaving the human being. The enormity of your situation is undeniable, but sitting around and thinking about things in the future will not free you at present. Try to win every single day man. On a long enough timeline, when human beings possess determination and discipline, incomprehensible things occur. Just keep at it no matter how hard and how easy quitting seems. In life, bad shit falls into our laps. The good, we have to chase after.
    If you win more days than you lose, I promise that in the end you will be veritcal once again. I suffered a T-10 Incomplete SCI in June of 2005. Doctors and several sepcialists wrote me off. But I never lost sight of how and what I was. I weathered the darkest shit life threw my way, and have been walking with a cane for almost a year now. It\’s not utopian by any stretch. Pain is a constant staple in my life and my legs are severely atrophied. I also deal with the absurdity of bathroom function(or lack there of) due to my injury. But fuck it man.. we got once shot at this thing called life, so we might as well give it our all. I believe in you man… but the only thing of any importance, is if YOU believe in You. cause if you do, then you\’ve already won.

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